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Cristiano Ronaldo takes a dig at Lionel Messi as he wins FIFA best football player award

The 31-year-old Portuguese star had a stellar 2016, winning the Champions League, Euro 16 and the Club World Cup in addition to all the top individual awards available

T2 Online Newsdesk 10 January 2017, 5:12 PM
Cristiano Ronaldo kisses the Best FIFA player award. He was given the award by FIFA President Gianni Infantino

Cristiano Ronaldo kisses the Best FIFA player award. He was given the award by FIFA President Gianni Infantino Image: AFP

Real Madrid star Cristiano Ronaldo won the FIFA Best Male Player Award over his great rivals Lionel Messi and Antoine Griezmann for a stellar 2015-16 season, at a glittering ceremony in Zurich. And that wasn't enough for the evening. He couldn't stop himself from taking a sly dig at Messi. After accepting the award, he said, "'I'm just very happy. I'm sorry some people from Barcelona aren't here, but that's understandable."

He also said that this achievement is incredible on a personal level. "Unbelievable, I will never forget this year. I am very happy. Thank you everyone, I don't really have anything else to add. The awards I think speak for themselves," he added.

In December this year, Ronaldo also won the Ballon d'Or, given by France Football magazine, with both honours recognition for success in the Champions League with Real and Euro 2016 with Portugal.

He thanked his team-mates, family and his whole staff. Leicester City coach Claudio Ranieri won FIFA Best Men's Coach award. Argentine legend Diego Maradona handed the award to Ranieri.

"I'm crazy now," said the Leicester coach, as quoted by the BBC. "Thank you so much for voting me. I'm 65 now, I start now as a manager!" Ex-Germany coach Silvia Neid won the FIFA Best Women's Coach award. Mohd Faiz Subri, forward of club Penang in the 2016 Malaysia Super League, won the Fifa Puskas Award for the best goal. He became the first Asian to win the award named after legendary Hungarian forward, Ferenc Puskas.

Carli Lloyd, of Houston Dash and the US, a World Cup winner and two-time Olympic winner, was honoured with the Fifa Best Female Player Award.

(With inputs from IANS)

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